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Online Search Marketing OMI Certification Course – Discovery Documentation
© 2009 Online Marketing Institute Agenda What is “Discovery Documentation”? Discover the business Discover the goals Discover the competition Discover the technology Discover the numbers Summary
© 2009 Online Marketing Institute What is Discovery Documentation? Discovery documentation is the process of gathering a list of core business drivers, goals and technologies that will allow you to anticipate obstacles, set expectations, and drive strategic vision and decisions.
© 2009 Online Marketing Institute Remember – It’s Called Documentation Creating real documentation is an essential part of a successful SEO campaign –Write it down –Save the work somewhere easy to access –Refer to the document often throughout the SEO process to see if there are additional insights to leverage for the client.
© 2009 Online Marketing Institute Discover the Business – Business Model It is essential to have a deep understanding of your client’s business goals and business model. Ask yourself and the client the following: –What are your core products, solutions & services? –Who are your primary customers and what job titles do they have? –What industry do you serve? –What sets you apart from your competitors? –Where are your customers located?
© 2009 Online Marketing Institute Discover the Business - The Client –What are your current marketing initiatives? –Who is available to collaborate in your team? Technical resource? Project manager for team? Who is the decision maker? –What kind of content is available online and offline? –Are there sub-brands, other websites or online properties? –What is your typical sales cycle?
© 2009 Online Marketing Institute Discover the Goals Understand the key objectives of the campaign –Drive conversions? How do they currently define an online conversion? –Generate traffic? What is the current traffic profile and how long have they tracked? –Increase brand recognition? –Increase rankings for specific keywords? What are their perceived most important search terms? –Other important KPIs?
© 2009 Online Marketing Institute Discover the Competition Understanding the competition & perceptions are important to SEO strategy and research. –Client identify top 5 competitor websites List likes, dislikes, competitive advantages & differentiators –Identify top competitors for their most important keywords phrases (identified in “understanding the goals”). The keyword competitors may vary from the client’s top 5 perceived competitors. Difference between business competition & online competition.
© 2009 Online Marketing Institute Discover the Competition Online Pepsi would identify Coca-Cola as competitor. For a “soda pop” keyword search other sites appear: –Niche information sites –General information sites like Wikipedia. –Universal results like images, maps & videos.
© 2009 Online Marketing Institute Discover the Technology In order to do your job, you have to understand the technology abilities and limitations. There are several technology items you will want to understand. –CMS Platform –Measurement technologies –Website server & hosting technologies –Web based technologies –Database technologies –Corporate guidelines vs. technological abilities
© 2009 Online Marketing Institute Discover the Measurement Technologies Are they gathering analytics? With an analytics tool or log files? Who is currently creating reports? What metrics do they report on? Do they measure through to conversions? Are the conversions tagged properly? Do they have any other advanced measurement tools? Have they tracked any historical rankings data?
© 2009 Online Marketing Institute Discover the Database Technologies Are there pages that are only accessed after login? Are there SSL, HTTPS, or other secure pages? Is the database customizable? In-house or contracted/purchased? Are your pages dynamically generated? What kind of files can exist on the site (flash, html, xml, php?)
© 2009 Online Marketing Institute Discover the Content Technologies Is the site using a content management system? –Platform, version, customization of CMS? How is CMS currently used by marketing team? Can the SEO get access to the CMS? Are there any currently known issues with the CMS? –Meta Tags, Heading Tags, Title Tags, Image Alt Tags, URLs, Internal Navigation
© 2009 Online Marketing Institute Discover the Client Guidelines & Limitations Are there current website style guides? Are there current content or branding guidelines? Are there PR or marketing decision makers outside of the core project team? What is their website update process? –Do they need technical spec sheets? Do they have quarterly coding updates? Is there anything that is currently online that is going away?
© 2009 Online Marketing Institute Discover the Marketing Partnerships Do they have another outside company help with any of the following –SEM (Paid Search) –SEO (Organic Search) –Social Media –Press Releases or Public Relations –E-mail Marketing –Web-Maintenance –Analytics Services –Usability
© 2009 Online Marketing Institute Discover the Numbers Discovering the numbers and where you are at. –Verify analytics numbers and accuracy. Get access to Google Webmaster tools if available. –Understand how many other SEO, online & offline projects the client is currently running & has historically run. –Determine what metrics need to be tracked to report on KPIs to the client. –Use analytics insights to drive keyword research & benchmarks.
© 2009 Online Marketing Institute Summary – Discovery Documentation Discovery documentation will allow you to understand how to succeed. –Understanding client business model helps you tell their story and enjoy deeper insights through the life of the project. –Understanding client technology allows you to implement and troubleshoot. –Understanding online presence allows you to harness the power of unique CONTENT! –Understanding client goals helps you set successful SEO goals. –Understanding the competitive landscape drives your keyword research and overall strategy.
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